Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners? - MensTennisForums.com
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
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Question Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Among several threads I have read that TMS Hamburg is slower than that of Roland Garros, Monte Carlo etc. So what is the reason that Federer is easily winning this tournament by easily beating Coria, Gaudio and many other baseliners although according to me this slowness of the court should benefit baseliners? Generally when the courts are becoming faster everyone knows that baseliners are less succesfull but why is this situation opposite in clay courts?
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 09:55 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

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Originally Posted by konyalikartal
Among several threads I have read that TMS Hamburg is slower than that of Roland Garros, Monte Carlo etc. So what is the reason that Federer is easily winning this tournament by easily beating Coria, Gaudio and many other baseliners although according to me this slowness of the court should benefit baseliners? Generally when the courts are becoming faster everyone knows that baseliners are less succesfull but why is this situation opposite in clay courts?
The main reason is that there are only few players better on clay than Federer right now , i would say Nadal ( he hasn't played in Hamburg the last two years ) and Gasquet ( if he has a good day .)

Players like Coria and Moya have shown that they aren't able to beat Federer , not even on clay . Players like Ferrero are very far from his best level , and players like Gaudio haven't the enough regularity to reach the final rounds when they would have to face Federer, although i don't see Gaudio winning Federer a lot of matches on clay ( in my opinion Federer will have always a winner head to head against Gaudio on clay , in fact Gaston has right now a loser head to head against Roger on clay 2-0 ).

Besides , Hamburg is a very cold tounament and a lot of claycourters hate to play under those weather conditions , on the other hand Federer has an special atmosphere with this german-speaking tournament.

Last edited by Galaxystorm; 11-24-2005 at 10:01 PM.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Is the weather only reason? So courtwise I am right I think. Does that mean if the weather is not cold then Gasquet should beat Federer once again in Hamburg?
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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 10:38 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

I also haven't understood it. In 2004, Hewitt, Ljubicic and Federer (all fast court players) reached the semi-finals and Roger went on to win it.

I'm not totally convinced that Hamburg is so slow. The weather is always so bad there, so the retractable roof is always closed and my understanding is that indoor courts are faster.
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 10:41 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

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Originally Posted by konyalikartal
Is the weather only reason? So courtwise I am right I think. Does that mean if the weather is not cold then Gasquet should beat Federer once again in Hamburg?
I could tell you that in those heavy conditions the ball bounces lower than on another clay tournaments and this isn't positive for claycourters , who usually hit with a lot of topspin ( it's also true that Federer hits with topspin , but for claycourters their topspin is a key aspect of their game and without it they lose a lot of potential, on the other hand in my opinion Fed's topspin is much less important in his playstyle in comparison with a lot of claycourters who depend on it ) and blah blah blah

But , i think the main reason is 1) he's very good on clay , and 2) he has a special feeling with this tournament for any or random reason . If you try to find a tennistic ( technical ) reason to explain why Federer is better on Hamburg clay than on another clay surfaces, i think you are wasting your time , because i think it's more a matter of good feeling with this tournament, atmosphere ( german-speaking ) , the weather etc.

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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 10:49 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

I have to admit it does surprise me that Roger has won 3 times in Hamburg and not won in Rome. Rome should in many ways be ideally suited to Roger's game and did have in the 90's a final between Pete Sampras and Boris Becker - 2 players much more suited to a fast court. Rome has always had a reputation for being a fast court.

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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 11:33 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Because he has all the time to set up for his strokes, giving him more control over the already extreme angles he generates.

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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 11:46 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

He's said in interviews in the past, maybe in Paris one year, that the clay in Hamburg gives him time to generate more spin on the ball and create the angles that Domino mentions above; he needs to put work on the ball and surprisingly enough, this means a slower claycourt is better for him. I'm not sure he would feel that way if he ever had to play Nadal in Hamburg, but it seems to me a lot of his problems on clay come when the court is too fast and the ball zips through at pace, leading to a lot of bad bounces as it rears off the lines and destroying his timing. I remember the clinic of appalling returning he displayed two years ago against Mantilla in the final in Rome, a tournament where he's had one exceptional result in 2003 and little else besides.

Didn't he complain about the court not being watered after one set when he lost to Gasquet in Monte Carlo this year? That makes sense considering his dislike of claycourts that are too fast and more to the point, Gasquet's extremely aggressive, shot-making style of play. And he has nightmares when the opponent gets a ball to his baseline on Court Chatrier at RG, that much was obvious even this year when he made it as far as the semis.

The Wit and Wisdom of the Tennis Journalist, Indian Wells 2004

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I remember this one time when I went on a vacation on the Maldives. That was in the year 2001, I think. I went to this spa. I went to walk around with my girlfriend. I walk in, and we want to book a spa. This guy goes, "AHH, I remember you. You beat Sampras. I saw you on TV." That was like, really, how can you remember me? This guy has probably never been off his island and still knows me. I was a little bit shocked. Then I went to play tennis with him because he was actually the tennis teacher. It was nice.

Q. Were you naked at the time in the spa?

ROGER FEDERER: No. It was at the front desk. I didn't walk in naked.
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 11:49 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Yeah i think it's because the weather...Hamburg has an awful weather during that season, and nobody likes to play im the cold.

Gaudio º Gonzalez, F º Massu º Murray º Thiem º Nalbandian º Nishikori º Wawrinka
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 11:51 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sjengster
He's said in interviews in the past, maybe in Paris one year, that the clay in Hamburg gives him time to generate more spin on the ball and create the angles that Domino mentions above; he needs to put work on the ball and surprisingly enough, this means a slower claycourt is better for him. I'm not sure he would feel that way if he ever had to play Nadal in Hamburg, but it seems to me a lot of his problems on clay come when the court is too fast and the ball zips through at pace, leading to a lot of bad bounces as it rears off the lines and destroying his timing. I remember the clinic of appalling returning he displayed two years ago against Mantilla in the final in Rome, a tournament where he's had one exceptional result in 2003 and little else besides.

Didn't he complain about the court not being watered after one set when he lost to Gasquet in Monte Carlo this year? That makes sense considering his dislike of claycourts that are too fast and more to the point, Gasquet's extremely aggressive, shot-making style of play. And he has nightmares when the opponent gets a ball to his baseline on Court Chatrier at RG, that much was obvious even this year when he made it as far as the semis.

Variable bounces and higher speed off the court do not seem to cause Roger a problem on the Wimbledon grass. Does it have anything to his movement on the various clay surfaces.
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post #11 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 11:52 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

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Yeah i think it's because the weather...Hamburg has an awful weather during that season, and nobody likes to play im the cold.
Well, "nobody" should extend to Federer then, shouldn't it? Don't let that hat-trick of Wimbledon titles fool you, he doesn't play well here because of the weather. In fact, judging from his holiday choices he likes the sun as much if not more than many Spanish-speaking players. I do think the German-speaking aspect plays a part, he's on an incredible winning streak in German tournaments dating back to his loss to Philippoussis in Hamburg in 2003.

The Wit and Wisdom of the Tennis Journalist, Indian Wells 2004

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I remember this one time when I went on a vacation on the Maldives. That was in the year 2001, I think. I went to this spa. I went to walk around with my girlfriend. I walk in, and we want to book a spa. This guy goes, "AHH, I remember you. You beat Sampras. I saw you on TV." That was like, really, how can you remember me? This guy has probably never been off his island and still knows me. I was a little bit shocked. Then I went to play tennis with him because he was actually the tennis teacher. It was nice.

Q. Were you naked at the time in the spa?

ROGER FEDERER: No. It was at the front desk. I didn't walk in naked.

Last edited by Sjengster; 11-24-2005 at 11:56 PM.
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post #12 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-24-2005, 11:55 PM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

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Originally Posted by DrJules
Variable bounces and higher speed off the court do not seem to cause Roger a problem on the Wimbledon grass. Does it have anything to his movement on the various clay surfaces.
Oh yes, that too - I'm not sure he's a fan of the faster, more slippery claycourts. But Wimbledon's a different matter, he has an aggressive mindset on grass that allows him to play through occasional bad bounces or balls rushing off the court, whereas those sorts of factors can really throw you off your game and diminish your confidence if you're trying to build and create rallies as you have to do on clay.

The Wit and Wisdom of the Tennis Journalist, Indian Wells 2004

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I remember this one time when I went on a vacation on the Maldives. That was in the year 2001, I think. I went to this spa. I went to walk around with my girlfriend. I walk in, and we want to book a spa. This guy goes, "AHH, I remember you. You beat Sampras. I saw you on TV." That was like, really, how can you remember me? This guy has probably never been off his island and still knows me. I was a little bit shocked. Then I went to play tennis with him because he was actually the tennis teacher. It was nice.

Q. Were you naked at the time in the spa?

ROGER FEDERER: No. It was at the front desk. I didn't walk in naked.
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post #13 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 12:06 AM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

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Originally Posted by Sjengster
Oh yes, that too - I'm not sure he's a fan of the faster, more slippery claycourts. But Wimbledon's a different matter, he has an aggressive mindset on grass that allows him to play through occasional bad bounces or balls rushing off the court, whereas those sorts of factors can really throw you off your game and diminish your confidence if you're trying to build and create rallies as you have to do on clay.
Maybe the wrong stratergy, that is too defensive, on the faster more slippery clay courts.
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post #14 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 12:13 AM
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Perhaps. His shots are quite loopy off both sides, especially the backhand - obviously he can flatten them out on grass because when he hits a big shot there, it usually stays hit, but he definitely needs time to create his shots on clay. That Rome final I mentioned, there were so many times when Mantilla served on the deuce side and hit a fairly slow first serve deep in the box but it hit the line, reared up slightly and Federer completely shanked it with a big swing on his backhand side, usually out of court to his right without it even going over the net. And he looked overwhelmed by the Kuerten power at last year's RG, but then who wouldn't with the latter in that sort of form.

The Wit and Wisdom of the Tennis Journalist, Indian Wells 2004

ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I remember this one time when I went on a vacation on the Maldives. That was in the year 2001, I think. I went to this spa. I went to walk around with my girlfriend. I walk in, and we want to book a spa. This guy goes, "AHH, I remember you. You beat Sampras. I saw you on TV." That was like, really, how can you remember me? This guy has probably never been off his island and still knows me. I was a little bit shocked. Then I went to play tennis with him because he was actually the tennis teacher. It was nice.

Q. Were you naked at the time in the spa?

ROGER FEDERER: No. It was at the front desk. I didn't walk in naked.
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post #15 of 31 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Why isn't TMS Hamburg clay benefit of baseliners?

Galaxystrom said that "In those heavy conditions the ball bounces lower than on another clay tournaments and this isn't positive for claycourters , who usually hit with a lot of topspin." This enhances my thesis because the ball bounces lower when the court becomes faster. This is why the heavy top spin of the baseliners are not effective in faster courts considering their effect on clay. So the baseliners are generally don't get good results on faster courts. Now I can safely say that the weather conditions at Hamburg makes the court faster. This is why Federer, Hewitt and Ljubicic got good results at Hamburg clay.
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